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4jaynki

Carnival Magic Review- The Whole Story......

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Sea Day 1

 

Personally I like sea days, they give me the ultimate sense of relaxation. I got to sleep in, 930, that is like super late for me :D I'm usually up in the 7am hour on non-work days. Since this is Fathers Day I went an woke the boys and we all went to breakfast in Southern Lights. This was our 2nd experience in the dining room and again I was disappointed, I just felt there was no interaction from the wait staff, just get my drink, my order and bring my food.....that was all. We will usually tip extra, so far our money was safe in our pockets.....I guess that just means more gambling for hubby. As soon as breakfast is done the two 15 year olds head off to their club to get the schedule of events as it had to be rewritten with the change in schedule. I don't think I saw them again until 630, dinner meet up time.

 

I hang with husband and 18 year old a bit in the casino and soon become bored losing money :loudcry:. At about noon I decide to go sun bathing. My first stop was deck 10 AFT, not a single seat available, and too many small children for my liking. I will say that while there were of course seats "saved" about 70% were actually being used. I decide to head to Serenity, deck 15 FWD. I pass the midship pool and look, again I don't even notice one single chair available. I get up to Serenity and notice a few single seats here and there and continue to walk forward and there are 3 seats available at the front. I only needed one so it worked for me. I did not use Serenity on Glory so this is my first experience......I LIKE!!! I felt I could read in peace or strike up a conversation with adults nearby.

 

I spend the afternoon relaxing in the sun and head inside to iron dress shirts for elegant night......ugh BOYS. We all meet at 630 and head to Northern Lights for Your Time Dining. There is a wait, which I expected, we get our pager and head to take photos. This is where I learn that the photo system, Pixels, has changed their operating procedures. Now your photos are categorized by your room number or facial recognition (I didn't even attempt this), and all photos are keep digital until you choose to have them printed. You can view on large IPADS in designated areas or on your Carnival Hubb app. The even bigger shock was the price tag, just a few examples.....$14.99 to download a single photo to your mobile device, $19.99 a photo to get downloaded to a flash drive, $19.99 for a 8x10, $19.99 for 2 5x7's and so on and so forth. In the end I ended up purchasing two photos at basically $40.00. There were some great photos but I just could not bring myself to pay the price, I felt like I was shopping for senior portraits again. While on the cruise I learned that Carnival ran promotions in March and May where you could purchase packages such as unlimited digital downloads for $200. I guess I'll be on the look out next time.

 

Earlier in the day I ordered a vanilla cake for my husband for Fathers Day, $10 at Cherry on Top. They delivered it during dinner for dessert. None of us liked it, the frosting tasted like cardboard and the cake itself was dry, glad it was only $10.

 

Dinning room experience number 3 and again sub par experience. What was even more upsetting to me was we waited a hour to be seated and upon entering the dinning room I quickly noticed at least 10 tables completely empty and set-up for service....they remained this way for quite sometime. Again my tip money was safe in my pocket.

 

Also kids ordered soda in the dining room and when I received the bill at the end of the cruise I noticed an additional gratuity of $1 per order was added. This is a charge I was completely unaware of and checked our Glory receipt (because yes I still have it) and wasn't charged it. In all it added up to about $20 for the cruise.

 

We went to the comedy club that evening and saw Michael Issac, and my oldest, hubby and I enjoyed the show. We arrived about 15 minutes before the show and the place was packed, we actually managed to get a seat just because someone got up and left and we were standing in the right place at the right time.

 

Sea Day 2

 

To be honest sea day 1 and sea day two were about the same. Same experience with deck chairs at about the same time frame. Again same subpar service in both the Southern Lights for breakfast and Northern Lights for dinner.

 

We did go and see Michael Issacs last show in the comedy club, we showed up about 35 minutes prior to show time and were able to get a table. Again we enjoyed the show.

 

Adult Drinking Day 2 and 3

 

Over the two sea days I had 5 Coronas, 2 Pina Colada's, one specialty coffee and 1 dining room shot and hubby had 7 Long Island Ice Tea's (he says they are made super strong at the Casino Bar and 1 dining room shot, $170.39. Running total so far.....$214.69

 

Its my last day of vacation, go back to work tomorrow so I will back tomorrow evening with San Juan and maybe Amber Cove depending on my time schedule....I mean I have to start adulting again.

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Hi 4jaynki,

 

we were on this sailing with you! Our room steward also only gave us the choice of either morning or evening cleaning. We called guest services and were told something about how they didn't want the stewards running the vacuums all day. smh

 

I definitely think the Magic needs a much larger comedy club. On Thursday night there were people standing, and people sitting on the floor!

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4jaynki

Last year when my husband and I were on the Magic, we had to show up an hour before the comedy show started to get tickets, to get a seat. It sounds like it is just first come first serve now I hope. It was a pain in the butt.

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Enjoying the review, I'm looking at booking the same itinerary on the Breeze in 2020. I'll tune in tomorrow to read your review of the ports, I've never been to any of them.

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I'm really curious to see how much you spent on drinks. We're considering going on our first trip without Cheers but I'm nervous we are going to go over.

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Hi 4jaynki,

 

we were on this sailing with you! Our room steward also only gave us the choice of either morning or evening cleaning. We called guest services and were told something about how they didn't want the stewards running the vacuums all day. smh

 

I definitely think the Magic needs a much larger comedy club. On Thursday night there were people standing, and people sitting on the floor!

 

But yet we sailed the Magic in Feb and when I told him that we only needed cleaning in the morning, he said no he always does both. So maybe its up to the steward.

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So adulting was a little more than I could handle yesterday so I am back this morning to continue:p.

 

San Juan, PR

 

We pulled in about 8am and departed at 3pm (ish), if I recall correctly we had to be back on at 2:30pm. On port days we decided to go with the continental breakfast delivered to the stateroom, the boys had cereal and my husband and I had bagels an OJ.

 

We set out at about 9 with the intent of exploring San Juan on foot. We departed and turned immediately left towards the Coast Guard station and to the waterfront at Raices Fountain (it probably would have been even more beautiful had it been on). About a block prior to the fountain on the right is the Tourism building, we stopped there to get a map of the city. At the end of the fountain starts a nice wide concrete walking path that is about 1.1 miles and ends around the backside of Fort Morro. CATS, CATS and more CATS......they are everywhere, but they stayed out of your way. I will say watch for cat poop on the path. Once the trail ends we walked up the stairs along the backside of the Fort. The lawn area of the Fort has restrooms and a small souvenir shop. It was quite hot that day so my brood was already complaining with the walking and heat, to their small credit there is very little shade in this area. We found a small area with benches and some shade near the Totem Pole across the street and enjoyed some shaved ice from a street vendor. While waiting here I learned that the trolley that goes around Old San Juan is free, the map shows pick-up and drop off locations. None of us speak Spanish and the trolley driver did not speak English so we couldn't communicate to figure out where his particular trolley was headed so we just winged it, luckily it went right past the port so we stopped there.

 

At this point we decided to head back on the ship for lunch at Guys (I love their burgers and fries) and take a small nap. Old San Juan has plenty of bars and restaurants that cater to almost all palettes, personally I prefer to eat on the ship for the most part because I already paid for it.

 

Dinner that evening was as usual in the Northern Lights dining room, nothing to write home about. Again my money is safely tucked in my pocket. My gripe is more about the service than the food, for the most part I always think the food is great in the dining room. My family and I rarely visit the Lido, just our preference.

 

No comedy show this evening, instead they did some type of adult scavenger hunt it I recall correctly, we didn't make it.

 

Adult Drinking Day 4

 

I had 1 Corona and 1 Pina Colada and my husband had 3 Long Island's and 1 shot in the dining room, total $64.44. Running Total thus far $279.13.

 

I don't have time to continue with Amber Cove, as work is calling so I will continue this evening or tomorrow morning. In the words of my cruise director Chow Chow for Now!!!

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Ok we are booked in the Magic July 22 and I am kind of worried I have seen really bad reviews and this is our first time ever I am working seeing if we should have booked the Norwegian getaway. Are the shows any good on Magic and will my kids have enough to do

Lol any thoughts would be appreciated

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We were also on this cruise with our 15 and 18 year old sons. I honestly don’t remember what our steward asked me I just asked for service and ice both and he did it. Didn’t see him often but was always friendly and called me by name. Had assigned seating for dinner. Wait staff was fine. Not great as I have had at times but they are assigned so many tables now there is no way they could give the same service. Our 15 year old was always at his O2 group so maybe our sons met.

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Ok we are booked in the Magic July 22 and I am kind of worried I have seen really bad reviews and this is our first time ever I am working seeing if we should have booked the Norwegian getaway. Are the shows any good on Magic and will my kids have enough to do

Lol any thoughts would be appreciated

 

How old are your kids? We have been crusing Carnival since my boys were 12 and 14. They are now 17 and 19. They loved the kids clubs and were not bored. Our only requirement was to see them at dinner each night.

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Ok we are booked in the Magic July 22 and I am kind of worried I have seen really bad reviews and this is our first time ever I am working seeing if we should have booked the Norwegian getaway. Are the shows any good on Magic and will my kids have enough to do

Lol any thoughts would be appreciated

 

My 15 year old loves cruising, the O2 Club keeps him very entertained. My requirement, like others, is that I see him for dinner and he goes off the ship with us.

 

Now my oldest is 18, while he did not have a bad time he did not have a great time either. When we cruised 2 years ago he was 16 and hung in the O2 Club for organized fun and was able to easily meet others his own age and hang outside of the club. This year he did not have that. He is not a very social young adult so he did not find others to hang out with his age. If he was not with us he mainly stayed in his room. He states he would not like to go again unless he brings a friend or girlfriend.

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We were also on this cruise with our 15 and 18 year old sons. I honestly don’t remember what our steward asked me I just asked for service and ice both and he did it. Didn’t see him often but was always friendly and called me by name. Had assigned seating for dinner. Wait staff was fine. Not great as I have had at times but they are assigned so many tables now there is no way they could give the same service. Our 15 year old was always at his O2 group so maybe our sons met.

 

Hahahaha, I am sure they did as my youngest and his best friend practically lived there the whole week. :D

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Hi 4jaynki,

 

we were on this sailing with you! Our room steward also only gave us the choice of either morning or evening cleaning. We called guest services and were told something about how they didn't want the stewards running the vacuums all day. smh

 

I definitely think the Magic needs a much larger comedy club. On Thursday night there were people standing, and people sitting on the floor!

 

I really think they should use the main theater for comedy shows (they seem to pack the house), I know that will be an unpopular idea though. :confused:

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So adulting was a little more than I could handle yesterday so I am back this morning to continue:p.

 

San Juan, PR

 

We pulled in about 8am and departed at 3pm (ish), if I recall correctly we had to be back on at 2:30pm. On port days we decided to go with the continental breakfast delivered to the stateroom, the boys had cereal and my husband and I had bagels an OJ.

 

We set out at about 9 with the intent of exploring San Juan on foot. We departed and turned immediately left towards the Coast Guard station and to the waterfront at Raices Fountain (it probably would have been even more beautiful had it been on). About a block prior to the fountain on the right is the Tourism building, we stopped there to get a map of the city. At the end of the fountain starts a nice wide concrete walking path that is about 1.1 miles and ends around the backside of Fort Morro. CATS, CATS and more CATS......they are everywhere, but they stayed out of your way. I will say watch for cat poop on the path. Once the trail ends we walked up the stairs along the backside of the Fort. The lawn area of the Fort has restrooms and a small souvenir shop. It was quite hot that day so my brood was already complaining with the walking and heat, to their small credit there is very little shade in this area. We found a small area with benches and some shade near the Totem Pole across the street and enjoyed some shaved ice from a street vendor. While waiting here I learned that the trolley that goes around Old San Juan is free, the map shows pick-up and drop off locations. None of us speak Spanish and the trolley driver did not speak English so we couldn't communicate to figure out where his particular trolley was headed so we just winged it, luckily it went right past the port so we stopped there.

 

At this point we decided to head back on the ship for lunch at Guys (I love their burgers and fries) and take a small nap. Old San Juan has plenty of bars and restaurants that cater to almost all palettes, personally I prefer to eat on the ship for the most part because I already paid for it.

 

Dinner that evening was as usual in the Northern Lights dining room, nothing to write home about. Again my money is safely tucked in my pocket. My gripe is more about the service than the food, for the most part I always think the food is great in the dining room. My family and I rarely visit the Lido, just our preference.

 

No comedy show this evening, instead they did some type of adult scavenger hunt it I recall correctly, we didn't make it.

 

Adult Drinking Day 4

 

I had 1 Corona and 1 Pina Colada and my husband had 3 Long Island's and 1 shot in the dining room, total $64.44. Running Total thus far $279.13.

 

I don't have time to continue with Amber Cove, as work is calling so I will continue this evening or tomorrow morning. In the words of my cruise director Chow Chow for Now!!!

 

I was on RC Independence in February and our CD signed off the same way. I wonder if it's the same person or is that is a common thing.

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My 15 year old loves cruising, the O2 Club keeps him very entertained. My requirement, like others, is that I see him for dinner and he goes off the ship with us.

 

Now my oldest is 18, while he did not have a bad time he did not have a great time either. When we cruised 2 years ago he was 16 and hung in the O2 Club for organized fun and was able to easily meet others his own age and hang outside of the club. This year he did not have that. He is not a very social young adult so he did not find others to hang out with his age. If he was not with us he mainly stayed in his room. He states he would not like to go again unless he brings a friend or girlfriend.

 

Our oldest, now 20 found the same thing to be true once he aged out of camp. But now that he is at college, he and his 14 year old brother enjoy spending time together, so that helped. It was also aided by the fact that we cruise at Christmas and Spring Break, and after exams/mid-terms, he was ready for DOWN TIME. He is more than happy to just relax on his cruises now. And because he has been so good, we are taking his GF next spring break so he should be thrilled.

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My oldest is also 18 and I was concerned about what he would do because he’s always loved the camps. This time his gurlfriend was with us so he was with her the whole time swimming, comedy club and dancing late but I don’t think he would have had much fun otherwise. Probably won’t take him again until he’s over 21.

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I really think they should use the main theater for comedy shows (they seem to pack the house), I know that will be an unpopular idea though. :confused:

 

100% agree for all ships. We were on this cruise and never made it to the comedy shows as it was always packed and you had to get there way before the start of the show (no thanks)

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I would have immediately called Guest Services to find out when Carnival changed their policy. Their answer would have been they haven't and then I would have Michael speak to them so they can straighten him out.

 

Are you sure about that? I hate to break it to you, but Carnival changed their policy quite a while ago. You can choose service for morning or evening. The really kind stewards offer you both. On my last four cruises, I selected evening only, however, our steward actually serviced our cabin twice a day anyway.

 

Cheers!

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Everything I’ve read says the official policy is morning, evening or both. The cards were printed morning or evening and you were supposed to just check both boxes. I thought they were going to add the word both to the cards but have not verified if this happened. We have sailed several times since the change and have always requested and received both with no issues.

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I'm really curious to see how much you spent on drinks. We're considering going on our first trip without Cheers but I'm nervous we are going to go over.

 

If you can guesstimate how much you'll drink, I have a calculator on my blog that will help you.

 

http://www.love2cruise.org/drink-packages/

 

 

Yes, you can select "both" for the AM & PM service.

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I really think they should use the main theater for comedy shows (they seem to pack the house), I know that will be an unpopular idea though. :confused:

 

On the Vista, they did hold one or two shows in the main theater during the cruise.

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Carnival has NOT changed their policy, it's morning AND evening service. Individual stewards try to get over on newer cruisers that don't know any better.

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